WEANING? What foods to give?(10 Posts)
I was wondering if anyone could give me advice on weaning? My baby is almost at that stage and I am terrified! At first I planned on giving him paste and puréed food but when talking about it with my hv she said not to give puréed food because it's all about he baby learning to chew food and with purée he won't do that. She said just give him a bit of everything we eat.
But how? Do I give it the same way we eat or do I cut it up, or do I blend it a little bit so it's half puréed and half lumpy so he still has something to chew? And then from there at what age do I not need to do that for him anymore? I'm just worried I do it wrong and I don't want him choking on anything. I feel like an awful mum for not knowing this stuff
I did a mix of puree and finger foods and it doesn't have to be one or the other. Simple fruits/veg are good to start with and then if they are 6 months old you can add in pasta, bread, yogurt, meat, etc
Your HV should really have made sure that you felt you knew what to do and felt comfortable with Baby-Led Weaning, or suggested you attend a talk - can you call your HV team and find out if they offer anything? Ours do a weaning talk once a month that some friends have found helpful (particularly those who were planning on purees or had weaned a baby on them previously).
Basically, although the advice now is not to give purees by spoon, a lot of people still do, often in conjunction with do get foods, and that's FINE!! We did pure BLW with our first, and whilst it was eventually very effective, you have to hold your nerve to begin with and not worry that your baby is hardly consuming anything. It'll come, but it takes time for some babies. With my second were still doing BLW, but also giving things like mash potato in the end of a spoon and just giving him the spoon - now that he's 7 months, a bit does go in from the spoon!
It's very easy to feel inadequate as a new mum but the very fact that you're on here worrying about this makes me think you're probably a fantastic mum 😃
I'd advise starting with things like fingers of watermelon or roasted (peeled) pear - softish but not mushy. We also give whole meal toast fingers with a smear of cream cheese, breadsticks, broccoli florets, strips of pepper, strips of chicken, fingers of banana, tubes of pasta etc. Have your baby facing you, do you can monitor what they're doing, and try your best to relax! I know that's easier said than done...
I was absolutely bricking it when teething time came around, as there's all this pressure to puree your own food, give healthy stuff constantly etc. Pfft.
Here's what I did:
Pureed veg and fruit for an entire month and was utterly miserable and exhausted doing so. Baby didn't seem to care about the difference but I was wasting time making food that I should have spent with her.
So after a month we started buying Stage 1 pouches from the store, all pureed, all healthy. She started off only having a few spoonfuls per meal of it, then I'd give her a snack to nibble on (baby crisps/wafers etc, find in the baby food aisle). I also started offering her soft foods like a banana, or some bread, raspberries etc; anything she could mush up/make a mess with. Because she was getting pouched food, I didn't worry that she didn't really eat the real food.
Once she could finish a whole pouch per meal and still want more, I started trying to give her the 7+ jars of baby food, as THOSE encourage them to chew (babies don't need to learn to chew at 6 months, whatever HV says, they'll learn within the first year when they're ready). She's still have pouches sometimes, and more solid foods like a piece of ham or breadstick. If your baby can't munch it up, they won't. Simple. No harm offering. Offering food allows them to learn HOW to get it to their mouths on their own.
My lo has a smaller appetite than many babies, and she doesn't like to feed herself, she much prefers I feed her with a spoon, whereas your baby might well want to feed themselves. Just try different things and prepare for it to all be messy.
As for whether store-bought food is okay for your baby, it is pretty much all organic now and HAS to be safe. Asda do amazing deals on jars and Aldi pureed pouches are unbeatable on price. It's all safe for babies to eat, and all baby snacks (Stage 1 or 6+ months) will melt in their mouths.
If they seem to be coughing when eating then it is just them learning to swallow thicker foods than milk, and offer them water if it's dry food. Babies will eat anything you put in front of them, usually. Also, it can take up to 10 tries for a baby to decide whether or not they like something, so don't give in!
It's scary trying something so new and MESSY, but it can be great fun watching their eyes light up at a jar of spinach you wouldn't dare touch, and gobbling it down!
Do whatever you feel is best for your child not what others tell you to do. Try both puree and finger baby led and continue with whichever suits you and your baby
Haven't done it yet (still waiting for baby to arrive and reading to get over boredom of late pregnancy)
Baby at the table: a 3 step guide to weaning the Italian way by Michela Chiappa
Seemed to make sense to me though a little evangelical about home cooking, after all a jar of baby food when you can't be bother to cook so head to the takeaway ain't going to hurt! Is a mixture of purée and finger food - why does it have to be one or other. Can't see how a baby can go straight from milk to finger food.
I did a mix with DS. Started with puree and also offered some finger foods. I wish I'd done some pouches as well as DS got used to my home made food and wouldn't touch a pouch!
He much preferred the finger foods so we did more of them, but still spoon fed things like porridge, mash etc. First foods were veg then fruit then bread and cereals etc
The Gill Rapley book breaks down the theory behind the theory behind the finger food approach very nicely and can give a lot of advice if you're feeling uncertain.
MrKnightly, I can assure you that my baby went straight from milk to finger food with no issue and we are certainly not alone. She is almost 9 months and going strong.
The reason to get them to practise chewing at 6 months is to help them develop their mouth muscles, which helps with their speech acquisition.
That all said, I do spoon my baby weetabix in the morning, because that's what she wants me to do.
Just remember, Lucy, that your baby can learn to eat gradually, so there is no rush, no pressure. Milk is still the main source of nutrition until at least one.
I have a 7.5 month old and we've been weaning about a month.
I started with the intention of offering him pureed food plus finger foods at each meal. He loves being spoon fed but is really not keen on getting his hands mucky and picking up any food, even less so putting it in his mouth! It's really weird as everything else he can get his hands on he'll grab and shove in his mouth! In the last couple of days he has allowed me to put some pieces of soft fruit in his mouth and he's chewed them up so we're getting there, but not all babies will be like DavidPuddy 's and take to it straight away.
He's happy with his 'mummy led weaning' so, despite it being the 'in' thing to do BLW, we're going with purees for now.
We did two weeks of single vegetables first and he definitely now prefers vegetables to fruit, which is handy! I was always planning on doing this but read this white paper halfway through and was pleased we'd gone this way www.ellaskitchen.co.uk/vegforvictory/assets/pdfs/0003_1k_Green_Paper_V_Web.pdf (yes, it's written by a pouch company but the rationale behind it seems sound).
A month in, we haven't used a single jar/pouch or packet snack. I haven't spent a huge amount of time preparing food; in the first week I cooked a batch of each vegetable which filled about two ice cube trays which I then decanted to freezer bags. When we started doing combinations I made enough for about 8 portions. The longest I've spent on any day is 30 mins, and I definitely need to cook everyday - just grab from the freezer and defrost. I've got a Kenwood Chef with the multi-mill attachment - perfect for whizzing up small amounts, and you can use the glass jars for storing a portion for the next meal in too.
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